TWINSBURG, Ohio — Over 50 animals, including dogs, cats and birds, were rescued from filthy conditions at a condemned home by the Humane Society of Summit County after reports of alleged abuse and neglect, according to a news release from the organization.
The situation had been reported to the HSSC’s humane agents, who investigated and seized the animals in October due to severe neglect, the release states.
While initial reports suggested there were only a dozen animals inside the property, when agents arrived there, they found over 50 dogs, cats and birds living in filthy conditions with little access to food and water, HSSC representatives said.
A total of 22 small chihuahua-mix dogs, including two litters of puppies, were found and rescued from the home. A total of 13 adult cats and kittens were found in every room “desperately seeking refuge from the unsafe conditions – including one kitten hiding in an oven drawer and another in a cabinet under a sink,” the release states.
Fifteen birds were found in cages, surrounded by refuse, waste and vermin, HSSC stated.
According to the release, it took agents 12 hours over two days to find, trap and transport the animals.
Once the animals arrived at the HSSC, veterinary staff began triaging and treating the animals for malnutrition and other emergency medica ailments, including fleas, open wounds and scarring from old injuries left untreated. Most of the animals had ringworm, a highly contagious fungal infection requiring a weeks-long treatment regimen that the HSSC said has strained the organization’s resources.
The animals also suffered emotional wounds due to their neglect, and the HSSC’s behavioral staff are working with the animals to develop trust.
“What these animals have endured in their lives is tragic,” said the President and CEO of HSSC. “While the influx of animals with such great medical needs has challenged us, it is also the reason we are here – to give second chances to vulnerable and hurting pets from our own community; animals that have nowhere else to go. We are proud to give these animals hope and after rehabilitation, a future through adoption.”
Ownership of the animals was awarded to the HSSC on Nov. 30 with a legal ruling from the Akron Municipal Court.
The birds, which include one parakeet, five cockatiels, seven doves and a pair of finches, have been transferred to a local bird rescue for continued treatment and eventual adoption.
The HSSC said that due to their shyness, the dogs will require adult-only adoptive families, or families with children over 13. Some dogs will do best with a resident dog.
The group of rescued pets have been dubbed the “President Pets,” because each animal was named after a U.S. president or vice president, the HSSC release states.
While some animals have already been adopted, interested adopters can complete the HSSC’s Adoption Application form online to be contacted on a first-come, first-considered bases as the President Pets become available for adoption. Find more information and fill out the adoption application here.
The care expenses for this group of pets are estimated to be over $50,000, and the HSSC is accepting donations online here, or by mail to Humane Society of Summit County, 7996 Darrow Rd., Twinsburg, OH 44087.
Including the animals involved in this case, the HSSC currently houses 370 animals, and the organization serves over 2,500 animals each year at its no-time-limit facility.
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